Questions tagged [ethics]

On making a decision based on morals or common ethical codes instead of etiquette, rules, institutional or government policy, or technical or procedural reasons.

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4 votes
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120 views

Advisor Withholding Publication of Meaningful Data

Some details will be omitted for anonymity's sake, but, hopefully, the information provided is adequate. I am a graduate student that finished the collection of a complete dataset over 2.5 years ago. ...
28 votes
2 answers
6k views

What are the ethics of creating educational content as an advanced undergraduate?

I had the idea to create a series of short-form educational videos intended to de-mystify quantum computing. Ideally, these videos would be suitable for a wide target audience and consequently would, ...
20 votes
12 answers
9k views

Can I suggest that my professor use slides instead of writing everything on the board?

I got a newly hired professor this semester. He is a good teacher but sometimes gets in trouble explaining a new topic since he writes the big formulae on the board and misses a lot of things in the ...
0 votes
1 answer
222 views

Someone submitted my code as their code in an assignment; what should I do now?

I am second year student; one of my friends stole my code and then applied for an extension. I submitted my file on the deadline day and they submitted 10 days later using the same file as mine. Two ...
3 votes
2 answers
217 views

What happens to my ethics application when transferring PhD to a new uni?

I may need to transfer my PhD to a new university soon due to moving overseas. My PhD can be done entirely online, so in theory this shouldn't hinder the research itself. For my current project, I ...
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6 votes
3 answers
1k views

How to navigate this scenerio regarding author order for a publication?

Let me start off by saying that I am really a nobody in my field of research. Several months ago I reached out to a very well-known researcher, one of the big names, with a draft paper I was working ...
49 votes
9 answers
11k views

Advisor getting involved in semi-pseudoscience

I am a final year PhD student and recently my advisor started collaborating with some people engaged in what I would call semi-pseudoscience. For the sake of anonymity, I won't give the details but ...
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4 votes
3 answers
349 views

Right to see the proof of cheating and privacy

A person accused of any wrongdoing should have the right to see the proofs of such a wrongdoing. Then, a student accused of cheating because having presented the same answer, work or file as any other ...
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2 votes
1 answer
167 views

Feel like I should have gotten authorship or at least an acknowledgement

A few years ago, some colleagues from institution A (where I also work) developed a certain technique. They tested it experimentally, it worked and gave good results. They wrote it up and got it ...
12 votes
4 answers
3k views

Can I use plagiarism checker to check the similarity index of my manuscipt?

My university provides access to Turnitin for every student. I have prepared a manuscript ready for submission to a double-blind review conference for September 2023. Is it OK to use the plagiarism ...
13 votes
9 answers
5k views

Do I deserve to be acknowledged as the primary contributor to a publication derived from my student's thesis?

Unlike the supervision style in my department (CS), I put an enormous effort into supervising my master's students. I meet with each of them twice a week and spend around two hours each week ...
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4 votes
3 answers
953 views

Requiring specific licensing for optional coursework - is it OK?

To gain extra credit for a course I lead, students can share their notes from a lecture which we intend to use as starting point to develop a better (free) learning material than just sharing slides ...
5 votes
3 answers
320 views

Decrease chance of academic article being sensationalized in media

I am first author on a perspective paper being reviewed. The last authors are well known and comfortable discussing the future of certain technologies that can be seen as exciting but also provocative/...
10 votes
6 answers
4k views

Is it ethical to become a volunteer teaching assistant?

There is a negative attitude towards volunteering in academia. I am about to graduate (currently an undergraduate student). There is a 6-month gap between my graduation date and the matriculation date ...
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1 vote
2 answers
1k views

Is it acceptable to post an exam question from memory online?

You are not allowed to directly post material from a professor's lecture but any notes you take are considered your intellectual property. By the same token if you take an exam and remember a question ...
8 votes
6 answers
5k views

Is it illegal to use resources in a university lab to prove a concept could work (to ultimately use to create a startup)?

While I understand this is not a legal help site and it may differ from university to university, I am curious if anyone has any thoughts on this. I am in an undergraduate programme in a life sciences-...
8 votes
1 answer
365 views

Ethics of using knowledge gained from reviewing submissions available as preprints

There seems to be a notion that, when reviewing a paper, you are not supposed to use the knowledge acquired from that paper in your own research. In particular, you shouldn't build upon the paper's ...
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17 votes
6 answers
7k views

How would you handle a colleague offering your PhD student a postdoc position?

How would you handle a colleague offering your PhD student a postdoc position? I had applied and received fund for him to continue with me as a postdoc immediately he graduates. We had this discussion ...
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8 votes
2 answers
590 views

How to deal with ABD misrepresenting self as Dr [closed]

I supervise an employee who insists on being called Dr. in emails and on social media, but is ABD (all but dissertation) from about a decade ago. How have people handled such situations? I was ...
3 votes
0 answers
79 views

Consent issues when the only participants are the investigators themselves

I'm am on staff at a tertiary level college. My colleagues and I are developing a wearable, non-invasive monitor, not too dissimilar from a Fitbit. Naturally, we want to know whether the monitor works ...
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1 vote
1 answer
139 views

Adding advisor's name as a coparticipant without their permission

Thank you in advance. I had some issues with my advisor and want to get some advice. I got a Ph.D. degree from a foreign country and started my new postdoctoral position here in the US this year. ...
2 votes
2 answers
165 views

Can my advisor change the ordering of authors in a paper already under review?

When I was a student, I wrote a paper and submitted it to a journal. Having graduated, I am working for a company and am very busy. Recently, we got a revision for the paper and my prof asked me to do ...
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13 votes
3 answers
4k views

As a doctor, can your academic and clinical career be affected by your nudes getting leaked? [duplicate]

So first off, let’s start by saying that I’m insanely stupid for letting this happen. I’m currently a fresh grad doctor. I was on a dating app and I sent nudes (no face showing but doing simple ...
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6 votes
4 answers
2k views

Start a research project with a student in my class

I am a postdoc. One of the students in the class I am teaching has reached out about getting involved in research. I would be happy to work with them on a project. Are any ethical issues with this ...
-2 votes
1 answer
175 views

Research topics “belonging” to a school

I heard that in some scientific schools it is typical that certain research topics “belong” to the school, and people from other schools are not welcome to work on them. I am wondering how popular is ...
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10 votes
2 answers
3k views

Are certain conferences or fields "allocated" to certain universities? Should I avoid attending certain conferences?

Once I published a few math papers which contained new ideas in a new direction. This was closely related to my usual field of interest, but went somewhat beyond it. It was not obvious to me how many ...
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30 votes
8 answers
8k views

When should a PhD student be removed as first author?

As an advisor, at what point do you decide that a PhD student no longer deserves authorship on a paper? I am an associate professor who is very active in engineering research at a low-ranked R2 ...
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1 vote
2 answers
182 views

Continue my phd in another instution

I'm halfway through my PhD studying abroad and due to a series of problems with my current advisor and the way the university is handling these issues my mental health has been affected and I'd like ...
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6 votes
3 answers
322 views

Is it ethical to invite your supervisors for dinner before graduation?

I plan to finish my PhD thesis this year, but I will likely not be able to defend it this year, because my supervisors obviously need time to review it. However, I will leave the country by the end of ...
0 votes
3 answers
194 views

Is it ethical to present a math work on two different seminars on the same department?

I wrote a paper in mathematics and I would like to present it to the right community of experts. I believe that the work might be of interest both to geometers and analysts. Hence I am thinking to ...
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2 votes
1 answer
153 views

Can a publisher make substantial edits and publish them without the author, editor, and designer's permission?

After spending nine months to create a catalog, I submitted the completed layout to the organization paying for the printing of the book under intense pressure to get done. I curated the exhibitions ...
28 votes
8 answers
10k views

What should I do if I have some evidence pointing out that the results presented in a conference paper might be fake?

During the reading of a paper, published in the proceeding of a prestigious computer science conference, I noticed a logical error in the results presented in the paper. I contacted two of the authors ...
user avatar
24 votes
11 answers
10k views

Is it valid to feel uncomfortable with questions unrelated to the grading of your performance?

I recently attended an online seminar related to building scientific writing and research skills. The TA started by saying he wanted us to introduce ourselves and asked each of us to tell everyone ...
1 vote
2 answers
167 views

Can my past supervisor use our unpublished data for grants without my permission?

Say I work on a project as a Postdoc/PhD student and conduct an experiment or study, and this results in data that leads to another interesting follow-up question, or possibly even indicates a major ...
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6 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is it okay to re-render a plot used in another publication?

I found a chart in another publication that I'd like to cite, however it's small and is a dot plot when it should be a line plot (I guess because the data points were non-contiguous and the authors ...
0 votes
1 answer
171 views

Using typically censored data

Suppose there is some (public) data set that censors (in the common parlance) any data satisfying a certain criterion. By a rather obvious workaround, these censored data can be exactly recreated, ...
4 votes
1 answer
326 views

Is it unethical to work on "open" ideas of other people without giving them credit?

At many universities, there are dedicated websites where supervisors can publish information on current research projects looking for students. These research projects often have some "vague"...
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3 votes
1 answer
228 views

Who owns unpublished research data?

For example: a thesis is proposed by a student at a university and it requires funding for research. They secure private funding. Then for whatever reason, the research project is cancelled and shut ...
-1 votes
1 answer
62 views

Affiliation and Conflict Disclosure: Ethnography with Workplace customer’s

I am conducting an ethnographic survey with customers of the company I work for. I work for an Essential Oil company in the product development corporate department. The company is an MLM, and I ...
9 votes
3 answers
1k views

I'm not comfortable traveling for routine events anymore [closed]

As the news on the climate front keep getting worse (not that it's unexpected, but it's still depressing), I would like to minimize my travels and consequently my carbon footprint. Naturally this ...
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22 votes
5 answers
6k views

Is it ethical to submit papers under a false identity and affiliation to avoid peer review bias?

According to Huber, J., Inoua, S., Kerschbamer, R., König-Kersting, C., Palan, S., & Smith, V. L. (2022). Nobel and novice: Author prominence affects peer review (August 16, 2022): We invite more ...
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-1 votes
2 answers
623 views

How to deal with demanding fees to accept the article

An author submitted a manuscript to a Scopus and a Web of Science Journal. Few months later, he received an email including the full name of the author, name of Journal and the title of the submitted ...
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1 vote
1 answer
81 views

Submitting to a workshop after journal submission

I have recently resubmitted my manuscript after major revisions to a mid-lower tier open access journal. I am interested in submitting this same manuscript as a proposal to a workshop. On the workshop'...
7 votes
3 answers
644 views

Forced to put my name on a bad quality and fraudulent paper

I am studying Computer Science in an unknown, crap tier university in India. Due to my interest in Deep Learning, I've done some strong projects and internships in it. Word passed over and people ...
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0 votes
2 answers
231 views

How long after completing a Postdoc position should one forfeit first-authorship for unpublished data?

Usually Postdoctoral Fellows do not have the Intellectual Property (IP) for the data they collect during their positions. When a Postdoc finishes their role, research institutions can potentially use ...
  • 505
32 votes
6 answers
4k views

Should I cite the paper from which I got the research question in my own paper?

While reading the paper of some authors. I have decided to work on a question which they listed as an open question in the conclusion section. I'm hesitating on whether or not to cite the paper, from ...
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4 votes
1 answer
297 views

Is it ethical to use an illegal pdf of a book that you bought?

Let’s say the situation is this: you bought a physical copy of a textbook, and for whatever reason you want to view a pdf version of said book, maybe so that you don’t have to carry it around, etc., ...
  • 201
47 votes
6 answers
14k views

I witnessed massive cases of corruption and cheating in my university. Now what?

I have dedicated four years of my life in a journey at a so-called "respectable" university in the Middle East as an undergraduate student pursuing my degree. In this journey, a period ...
  • 621
6 votes
4 answers
446 views

What possible consequences could one face for not getting IRB approval for federally-funded research? Could you go to jail?

We have discussed before that consequences for not getting irb approval might include: (1) not be able to publish in a reputable journal, and (2) getting sanctioned or fired by your employer. But I am ...
  • 59.1k
6 votes
1 answer
184 views

What's my responsibility if I suspect an IRB violation? Could I be personally responsible if I don't report my concerns?

I'm a part of the University staff supporting research. I recently became aware of a faculty research project being conducted with a commercially purchased dataset that contains PII. I do not believe ...
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